DUNMORE, LACKAWANNA COUNTY (WBRE/WYOU) — “Last year if you buy a truckload of lumber, maybe in that $12,000 to $15,000 range, now you’re getting a bill for $40,000,” Dunmore Lumber owner Ron Cordaro said.

Wood prices are skyrocketing as the nationwide lumber shortage continues to impact both buyers and distributors. Cordaro has been in the industry for 40 years. He, as well as many local lumber yard owners, say they’ve never experienced anything quite like this.

“All winter the prices went up. Even when things shouldn’t have, and the demand wasn’t there, it just continued,” Cordaro said.

It started at the onset of the pandemic when lumber mills were among the industries forced to stop production to contain COVID-19.

“When this COVID first hit last year, one of the reasons why is they deemed sawmills non-essential. So they were shut down for two, three months and that was just when the building season was starting,” Cordaro said.

Throughout the pandemic, home improvement projects and construction gained popularity, increasing demand for lumber with little supply available. Today, Cordaro says because of extremely high costs, people are putting their renovations on hold until further notice.

“I feel bad for people that are in the midst of a job that have to absorb these costs, and the people that, say, started a house, and now, what do you do, you’re halfway through it,” Cordaro said.